WOOD RIVER - Junior Tahj'Juan "Tookie" Smith takes his school work at East Alton-Wood River High seriously and puts equal effort into his role with the Oilers' boys' basketball team.
He said he is most proud of his grades and being a leader on the boys' basketball team.
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"I have been playing basketball since I was 5 years old and I just like seeing the excitement all my teammates face when we are working as a team," he added.
Tookie said being a basketball player has helped him to develop into a better person because of the discipline and teamwork involved.
He said he wanted to attend Kansas University because that is where his dad always wanted to go to college. Tookie is also a member of the football and track teams.
Tookie thanked his father for his inspiration in his life.
"My dad believed in me and he knows the work I put in on my free time and he knows how good I can be," he said.
Smith also thanked his present head boys coach Kevin Gockel for his mentorship.
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